Do apples ripen after being picked?

publickmanAugust 2, 2009

Or rather, do they ripen after after having fallen off of a tree? Instead of the wonderful citrus and fig trees I had in Venice, I now have a Fuji apple tree, along with a puny plum tree that only yielded about 12 plums. Those plum trees are going to get replaced!! When I can afford it, I will replace the ornamental peach tree, which is taking up valuable real estate. I could have a large avocado tree there instead.

Anyway, back to apples. I almost never buy apples, although I do like to cook with them from time to time, and I like to eat apple slices drizzled with aged Balsamic vinegar. The apple that fell from my tree is mostly green with just a bit of rosy color showing up on the bottom. I'm sure it's not yet ripe, since the pictures I have found showed fully red apples. I have no desire to eat an apple that is not yet ripe.

I might leave the apple tree in the yard, depending on how much work it ends up being to maintain. It looks like it might need a lot of pruning, but I know nothing about it. I prefer to stick with trees that I know, like lemon, lime, orange, avocado, etc. I won't plant another fig tree here because the yard is too small for that plus all the citrus that I want. It really hurt me the other day when I had to buy limes at the grocery store. They were 50¢ each! I won't be planting another mango tree either, since they use way too much water and take up a huge amount of space.

I'll try to post some photos later, possibly today, now that I am getting a bit caught up.


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Yes an apple will ripen more after picking.
Try eating it, you will be surprised how good a slightly green apple really is.
when I had apple trees I loved a slightly green apple sprinkled with a little salt.
And you will find many will fall. They are very good for cooking. If there is a bruise, cut it off.
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 5:58PM
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Okay, I will give it a chance. I'm kind of guessing that if it is a bit green that it will simply be more tart, but I was also afraid that eating a green apple would upset my stomach. I did eat slightly green mangoes, and I liked them that way as well, as did a lot of my friends who had lived with mango trees. I put lime juice on mangoes instead of salt, however.

It's good to know that I can cook with green apples, since I really prefer cooked apples to raw.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 9:10PM
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Green apples won't give you a stomach ache, regardless of how many little boys have been told they will. I eat them all the time.

Apple trees do tend to have "drops", apples that fall off before they are ripe. They are very crisp/hard and sour. Sometimes they are too small and green to eat, sometimes they are just fine. I tend to use them in apple cider, they give a nice tart note to go along with the sweeter varieties. I'll never understand why Dad planted THREE Red Delicious trees.

Fuji doesn't get all dark red, like a Delicious or a MacIntosh, or at least they don't here. They tend to be a creamy color with just a red blush, sometimes only pink on one side even.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 9:53PM
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Yes and no.

Apples produce their own ethylene, a gas, from methionine, an amino acid they contain. The ethylene increases the intracellular levels of amylase, which hydrolyzes starch to produce simple sugars. Hence, an apple makes itself sweeter. An apple also becomes softer with age (as will any fruit).

But it does not "ripen" in the sense that it develops any more flavor, aroma (essential oils) or nutrients.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 9:53PM
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Like Annie, says a fuji is red blushed..not all red.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2009 at 5:10PM
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I used to buy boxes of fuji apples from a local orchard, 5 miles away.. They finally pulled out all the trees because the fuji apples didn't turn red enough in this area to be marketable. What a shame, they were the best fujis, sweet-tart, long keeping w/o refrigeration and not too large. Grocer fujis are really large, weighing more than a pound sometimes, but red.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2009 at 1:06AM
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I still haven't eaten the fallen apple, but I will do so this week. I do like apples that are sweet/tart and crisp, and so it might be okay with me. I don't expect to get many apples from this tree, and if it's a big disappointment (like the plum tree), I'll replace it with something I like better. I'm wondering how expensive it will be to have the trees removed. Kevin says I have to have it professionally done, but I think I could get rid of most of it myself and then have someone else just remove the roots.

I looked at some Fuji apples in the grocery store, and they were more of a blush color than solid red, but at least I have an idea of how they are supposed to look. Next time I will buy one to see how the grocery store version tastes (and costs).


    Bookmark   August 5, 2009 at 11:34AM
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We have two apple trees that are wild ones on the fence line from our property that use to be an old orchard, My husband has been pruning them for years and the apples are large and very tasty but don't know what the variety is. We pick them slightly green and let them ripern some and make pies and juice from them both. I think last season made ober 30 pies, gave bunches away and over 100 gallons of pure apple juice I froze and gave to my children and friends too. Some I have left in the freezer tastes like fresh squeezed and so sweet . Seems a shame to just let them drop for bears to eat and make a mess of the trees..

    Bookmark   September 20, 2013 at 2:34PM
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